Sunday, November 27, 2016

It's Thailand

Before I forget, the Address some of you have requested is..

1645/6 New Phetchburi Road, Makkasan, Ratchathewi Bangkok 10400 Thailand.

Life has been so good here in Thailand. Some moments have been extremely challenging, but other moments have made it so worth it. 

I have had a chance to socialize with the members a little more this week. They are so kind to me. They are my favorite! Inviting has probably been one of the most difficult and rewarding experiences I have had here in Bunnkhapphi(Will never know how to spell that in English). Most will ignore you politely, and others will shrug you off within moments. Some will listen, but not be interested. But there are a few where you can just see that they recognize something different in you. That there is something special about your message. I give many personal prayers throughout our inviting sessions. That I might meet someone that needs and would be willing to accept the message. That I might be comforted. 

It was interesting to see the change of my own heart. At first, it was a prayer of comfort to overcome my own pride. To help me understand that this work was greater than myself and that I was a mere instrument in the hands of the Lord. But soon my prayers changed to that of a desire to feel comforted in the sorrow I felt not for myself, but for those that rejected His message. I felt a sorrow I have regrettably too rarely experienced. A sorrow not for myself, but for others. I feel my heart beginning to turn outwards. ​

On a particular day where inviting was particularly hard, I wondered if this was how the Savior felt when His message was rejected by many. In this I felt closer to the Savior, as I experienced the tiniest fraction of what He experienced. Through this experience, I have become especially grateful for the members at church and for the faith they bring. It helps put things into perspective as it helps me see the goal I am progressing towards to. We have two Brothers with baptismal dates coming up really soon. I pray that they might make it into the waters of baptism. Though this path of the Savior is hard and difficult at times, I know that it is the only path which leads to true and lasting happiness.

Shout out to those I have not had the chance to email back..I love you guys.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Life is so Sabay

A large swirl of emotions never ceasing to find its climatic end. Which is a good thing. 
Food is amazing. Oh it's so good. There are these food courts here that are kind of like the ones you might find in Japan. But cheaper. A meal you might buy for about 50baht. About $1.50 in USD's. Delicious. I'll send pictures next week. 

I had the opportunity to bear my testimony in Thai during sacrament meeting. That was a really neat experience. I wasn't scared. I felt confident. Hopefully the reason being I have my trust in the Lord.
My new companion is Elder Rawlinson who has been incredibly patient with me. I love him already. He is from Gilbert Arizona. Half American and Half Chinese. His Thai is excellent so I'm hoping that it will rub off on me. I have already received quite an amount of coaching. 
I've gotten out of my bubble of uneasiness on the first few days with contacting. Everyone walking is no match for me and my bicycle. We have two new promising investigators since my arrival. Perhaps one. We'll see how Brother Kang pans out. We met Brother Kang when we were out walking to a store to purchase a bicycle for myself. We just casually started talking with him, and then began talking of God, church, and religion. He agreed to meet with us for a short period just then! We took him to the church close by, taught him the first discussion introducing the Book of Mormon and Moroni's Promise. Showed him the chapel and the insides of the church. It was so neat to have such a success on the first day of street contacting! Apparently, everyday is not like this....We'll see if that really is the case. The Lord has truly prepared the hearts of the people here. I hope that I may be adequate to relay the message of our Savior according to His will. 

The effects of jetlag have been minimal on my body as I slept nearly the entire plane ride. It was so nice to be able to sleep for a change.
I am so grateful for my opportunity to serve a mission. To meet so many wonderful members and potential investigators also! So many kind hearts are here in Thailand. So willing to listen. One thing I found interesting is that the people here are so shy! So you have to be careful when talking with them. I've been making sure to smile and talk with enthusiasm. In return, they have a whole lot to say and I kind of fade into the background and let my companion do the interpreting and talking. They talk really fast here...Very humbling. Very Happy.
Until next aathid, Elder Miyagi. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Week 8 (The Sun Will Rise Again)

6 days to Thailand.

Testimonies can be forgotten. Even the most devout members of the church can have a crippling moment in their lives where the love of God doesn't feel as tangible as it once was. Being told to have faith when it feels like nobody is listening to your prayers is hard. Perhaps even heartbreaking as you receive no answer after you pour out your whole soul to whom you have trusted most. But upon reflection within my own life, I have noticed that He has been there every step of the way. Seeing the miracles and tender mercies of the Lord in the present moment can be difficult. Especially when what is negative and bad seems to be overwhelming but I promise that He is there. Sometimes we just have to have faith that He is there, even when we don't feel His presence, as we have faith that the Sun is there, even when we don't feel its warmth or see its light. Even when you don't feel worthy of Him, even when you feel entirely and utterly alone, I promise and know with a surety that He is and will be with you, today, tomorrow, and forever. 

I have tried to write some other thoughts I had, but none of it seemed right at this present time. I feel that this message is adequate for what I wish to convey from the depths of my soul today. My simple testimony that we are never alone. That He knows the silent pleadings of our hearts. Should you feel tired, alone, or confused, I plead with you that you might hold on just a little longer. For He will not forsake you.

Elder Christian Seiya Miyagi
Thailand Bangkok Mission
1645/6 New Phetchburi Road,
Makkasan, Ratchathewi, Bangkok 10400 Thailand
Tel: (662) 652-7722, Fax: (662) 652-7722

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Week 7 (Be Bold)

13 more days until Thailand ~ Happy Halloween! (One day late)

One thing that I have been feeling very strongly these last few days is the fear of my mission ending, and being separated by the closeness I feel with God. Though I know that I can continually improve even after my mission, I really do hope I can rid myself of some of the natural man within me.  The duty of enduring to the end is a personal commitment. I still have another 23 months to go, but I can't say I necessarily look forward to the end of my mission. I love what I'm doing, and I'm not even in Thailand yet. 

One thing I have learned through some leadership positions I have had the opportunity of taking part in is that, boldness requires humility. Furthermore, it is only with humility that we may speak with the power of God.  

I re-watched Elder Hollands talk in the MTC some years ago entitled Missions are Forever. It is absolutely amazing. The boldness of Elder Holland is a great example to me as he says, "do not miss any opportunity you have to be apostolic!" He refers to us as apostles. Yes Apostles, but with a lower case "a."  Which makes sense, as we missionaries are yoked together with the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. It does make my responsibilities as a missionary feel more daunting. 

I feel that I have really become dedicated to reading from the Book of Mormon and recording my experiences in my journal daily. Wisdom forgotten is as valuable as the dust of the earth.  “Knowledge carefully recorded is knowledge available in a time of need,” said Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

I don't have much time this week so I apologize for the short length of my weekly email. I hope all is well with you. 

Until next week, Elder Miyagi.